Funeral services for Alden J. Swartz were held at 2 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 2. Pastor Barry Fritts officiated the service at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Westby. Interment with military honors will be in Emmaus Cemetery.
Alden, 82, died Tuesday, Sept. 28, at Kalispell Regional Hospital.
Born at Coalridge, Mont., Nov. 2, 1927, Alden was one of seven children of John and Martha (Christiansen) Swartz. He grew up on the family farm during the Depression years of the 1930s, graduated from Westby High School and joined the U.S. Navy Oct. 22, 1945. After his discharge Dec. 19, 1946, he returned to the Westby area.
In 1952, he began working for Great Northern Railway as a telegrapher, stationed at several places along the Montana Hi-Line. He married Dorothy Haugen in Los Angeles on March 7, 1954. In 1961, Alden started work as a train dispatcher, stationed in Havre, and moved to Billings in 1984, when the dispatch office was transferred there. In 1989, the dispatch center moved again. this time to Seattle, and Alden and Dorothy lived there for a short time before he retired. They lived with their daughter in Whitefish, Mont., before moving to Kalispell, where they have lived since.
A loving, gentle, and kind-hearted man, Alden lived his life with the frugality and resourcefulness that stemmed from his childhood in the '30s. He was a hard-working man and always put his heart into everything that he did, from restoring his collection of classic Cadillacs, to building and installing access ramps, grab rails, and other building adaptations for the mobility-impaired throughout the Kalispell area. Alden would set his mind to a problem, studying and researching the matter and applying his inventive and innovative mind to create a unique and professionally done solution. Aside from his busy schedule, he enjoyed fishing and skiing and was an avid runner. Later, as his health declined, he kept active by walking.
Alden is survived by his wife, Dorothy, of Kalispell; his daughter, Andrea Breuer and her husband Andy, of Whitefish; his son, Neil Swartz and his wife Angela, of Chester; and three grandchildren, Alexandria Breuer of Whitefish, Ben Breuer of Seattle and Adrienne Dillard and her husband Kyle of Salem, Ore. He is also survived by a great-grandson, Logan Dillard. He is also survived by two sisters, Lorraine Haugen of Phoenix, Ariz., and Carol Lowe of Surprise, Ariz.; and his brother, Duane Swartz and Jan of Spokane, Wash.
Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother,, Wallace; infant brother, Lyle; and sister, Hazel Johnson.
Fulkerson Funeral Home of Plentywood has charge of arrangements.